Salted Caramel Mug Cake (SF+DF)

I don’t know about you, but sometimes all I want are sweets–which is not exactly conducive to a healthy lifestyle. I believe that is moderation is certainly important, but I also love coming up with healthy alternative recipes. It brings me so much joy to develop a recipe that packs more nutrient value and still tastes amazing.

I came up with this salted caramel recipe recently after craving a warm cake late one evening.

Ingredients:
-2 tbsp oat fiber
-2 tbsp coconut flour
-1/2 tsp baking powder
-dash cinnamon
-1 egg (or 1.5 egg whites)
-Almond Milk or water, 3-7 tbsp
-Caramel Syrup
-Dash sea salt
-Dollop of whipped cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Combine oat fiber, coconut flour, baking powder, and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  2. Add in egg and 2 tbsp liquid and mix well.
  3. Slowly add in one tablespoon of liquid at a time until you reach cake-batter like consistency.
  4. Pour batter into a large greased ramekin and microwave on medium-high for 2-3 minutes or until the top of the cake is firm to the touch.
  5. Remove the cake from the microwave and pour on a generous amount of caramel syrup, a dash of sea salt (about 1/8 tsp), and a dollop of whipped cream.
  6. Enjoy your own mini piece of heaven!

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What’s your favorite healthy alternative recipe?

Warm, Creamy Rice Pudding: Two Ways for Winter (GF)

I have been craving different desserts with winter-themed tastes reminiscent of cinnamon and hot, deep cocoa flavors. Sometimes I feel like my mind is blank and lacks all creativity, but I recently had a stroke of creative genius for two different cozy, rice-based desserts. I love picking up different seasonal fruits and vegetables and I just picked up a bag of fresh cranberries. I love a nice cranberry sauce so I started with a simple homemade cranberry sauce and used it as a base for a creamy vanilla pudding.

Cozy Vanilla Cranberry Rice Pudding

Ingredients:
-1 bag Miracle Noodle Rice
-3/4 cup fresh cranberries
-1 tbsp water
-stevia, to taste
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
-1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:
1. Prepare Miracle Noodle Rice according to directions on the bag.
2. Combine fresh cranberries and water in a small microwaveable bowl and cover with a plate. Cook in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until you hear popping.
3. Remove cranberries from the microwave and combine with stevia until it is sweet enough for your liking.
4. Combine the cranberry sauce and vanilla, mix well.
5. Mix the prepared rice and cranberry sauce well.
6. Sprinkle cinnamon on top and enjoy!

Creamy Hot Cocoa Rice Pudding 

Ingredients:
-1 bag Miracle Noodle Rice
-2 tbsp special dark cocoa powder (or your favorite cocoa powder)
-2 tbsp almond milk (or dairy, soy milk, etc.)
-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
-2 tbsp vanilla protein powder (or hot chocolate mix)
-Stevia, to taste
-1 tsp coconut oil

Directions:
1.Prepare Miracle Noodle Rice according to directions on the bag.
2. In a separate bowl, combine milk, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, protein powder, coconut oil, and stevia to taste.
3. Combine the cocoa mixture with the miracle rice, stirring well. Add slightly more milk if the mixture is too thick (or more cocoa if the mixture is too thin).
4. Place the mixture in a bowl and enjoy hot or cold with a dollop of whipped cream!

***

What’s your favorite winter dessert? Do you use rice for dessert recipes?

Maple Roasted Winter Veggies (GF + DF)

My favorite dish at thanksgiving every year is as beautiful and colorful as it is tasty: roasted brussel sprouts, butternut squash, and onion tossed in a maple & apple cider vinegar dressing and topped with pomegranate seeds.

Full of vitamins, fiber, and flavor! Plus, it’s easy to prep ahead of time when you’re preparing a big holiday meal.

Ingredients:

1 stalk of brussel sprouts

1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped

1 large butternut squash, peeled

1 large pomegranate, seeded

3 tbsp maple syrup (can use sugar-free)

3 tbsp Apple cider vinegar

1 tsp minced garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Place whole butternut squash in microwave for 6 minutes.

3. Remove brussel sprouts from stalk.

4. Chop onion and larger brussel sprouts in half.

5. Remove butternut squash from microwave, then peel and de-seed the squash.

6. Chop the squash into 1-inch cubes.

7. In a small bowl, combine maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper and stir until well combined.

8. Toss brussel sprouts, butternut squash, and onions in maple syrup mixture until well-coated.

9. Place veggies on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes or until all veggies are tender.

10. While the veggies are cooking, break open your pomegranate into a bowl of cold water and separate the seeds from the white flesh.

11. Remove veggies from oven, place in serving dish and top with pomegranate seeds.

12. Pause to admire, then enjoy!

***

What are your favorite winter veggies?

Meal Prep Hacks for the Holidays

I love chicken–it is delicious and works as a healthy protein in nearly every dish. One thing I hate: cooking chicken. Many of my coworkers assumed I must be a pescatarian since I rely so heavily on tuna and plant-based proteins, but really it is my sheer distaste for touching raw meat. Not to mention the added cooking time! I’ve gotten burnt out from other protein options and I am desperate for a healthy easy protein to add to lunches and dinners.

I was thrilled to find the new USDA-certified Coastal Range Organics Chicken products.  I love these products because I know they are never made with any antibiotics, hormones or steroids. The chicken is fed 100% organic vegetarian feed without animal by-products and raised free-range. This is the only frozen chicken brand I feel confident eating–it is free of artificial ingredients and preservatives, unlike so many of the other brands (read the labels!). It is nice to have reassurance that you can actually get some goodness from your freezer with Coastal Range Organics. They also make make a variety of other products: crispy stripsbuffalo wingschicken nuggets, and chicken burgers .

I decided to make a fall themed pumpkin risotto with the delicious grilled chicken strips. It only took 20 minutes start to finish–perfect for a quick dinner or meal prep.

Ingredients:
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Black pepper
1 tsp Maple syrup
1 tsp Apple cider vinegar
Pumpkin, roasted and puréed
2 servings Coastal Range Organics Grilled Chicken Strips
1 bag Miracle Noodle rice

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2) Arrange 2 servings of your Coastal Range Grilled Chicken on a lined cookie sheet.
3) while oven is preheating, preparing Miracle Noodle rice according to directions on the bag.
4) Place chicken in preheated oven and set timer for 10 minutes.

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5) In a separate bowl, combine pumpkin, spices, vinegar, and maple syrup. Combine well.
6) Add Miracle rice to pumpkin mixture and stir until thoroughly mixed.
7) Remove chicken from oven and add into rice mixture.

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8) Enjoy! I actually served this dish over romaine to get in an extra serving of veggies.

Use code HANNAHNOV for a discount when you order from Miracle Noodle.

….

Do you eat chicken frequently? What are your favorite healthy cooking hacks?

Disclaimer: Coastal Range Organics sponsored this review, however this post represents my honest thoughts and opinions

Herb Infused Stuffed Squash

I recently received garlic herb Miracle Noodles and I was dying to use them in a fall inspired dish. I had a delicata squash to use and after I had such success with my last stuffed squash dish, I couldn’t resist running with this variation.

This screams comfort food to me; it’s a hearty blend of fall flavors, herbs, and garlic. I always love cooking and the inspiration struck me around 8pm after I had already made dinner so it became two days of lunches. This is also surprisingly budget friendly–a perk of eating seasonally that goes beyond the environmental benefits! (Delicata squash are only $.99 at Trader Joe’s!)

Ingredients:

1 delicata squash

1 tbsp canned pumpkin

1 tbsp broth

1 tsp coconut oil

1 tsp amore foods garlic paste

1 bag garlic herb miracle noodles

1 small bunch green onions

1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped

Directions:

1) Puncture delicata squash skin with a fork and cook in microwave on high for 4 minutes.

2) While the squash is cooking, prepare Miracle Noodles according to directions on the bag.

3) Heat coconut oil in a small skillet on the stove and briefly sauté green onions and mushrooms until tender.

4) In a separate bowl, mix pumpkin, broth, and garlic paste.

5) Add the pumpkin mix to the stir fried veggies and noodles and mix well.

6) Carefully remove the squash from the microwave and cut open (watch for the steam that will come out), then de-seed the squash with a fork.

7) Set seeds aside for roasting if you want–they make for a great crunchy snack!

8) Fill each half of the squash withe the Noodle mixture.

9) Enjoy!

***

What’s your favorite part of eating seasonal produce?

Shishito Pepper Rice Stuffed Squash

I was beyond excited to see a box of Shishito peppers in my CSA box this week! I got so many fresh goodies, but these peppers are so trendy right now…so of course I have been wanting to try them. I’ve heard they are particularly fun because they are mostly mild, but every once in a while a super-spicy pepper sneaks in! I decided this called for a new recipe; I looked up a few recipes and found that the peppers pair well with garlic and ginger. I had a few delicata squash lying around from my Trader Joe’s expedition, so soon a seasonal idea was brewing…

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I have seen great results from recipes that blister the peppers on high heat, and luckily my trusty air fryer heated those peppers up in about 8 minutes!

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Look at how toasty and charred they got?! My favorite. I had to eat a few right then and there–these peppers have a great mild flavor with notes of citrus–I definitely see what the fuss is all about.

I use the ultimate squash life hack–always pre-cook in the microwave! I swear this trick has saved me hours of agonizing while attempting to chop a raw squash, plus it is faster and uses less energy. So I microwaved my delicata squash (whole) for about 4 minutes, before de-seeding it and stuffing it with my rice mixture.

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Look how preeetttyyy

The last step involved one final cook through to make sure the squash was fully tender, which also let the flavors in the rice mixture come together even more and crisp up on top.

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Yum, I’d say it turned out pretty well! I’ll let you know how it heats up as leftovers at work.

 

 Ingredients:
1 bag miracle rice
1 tbsp liquid aminos
1 tbsp pickled ginger
1 delicata squash
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp coconut oil
6-8 blistered shishito peppers

Directions:

Roast shishito peppers at 425 or air fry them until crispy (about 8 minutes).

Place whole delicata squash in microwave for 4 minutes.

Prepare Miracle rice according to directions on the bag. Combine prepared rice with coconut oil, liquid aminos, garlic, pickled ginger, and chopped roasted peppers.

After cutting open the delicata squash lengthwise (be careful of the steam escaping), de-seed the squash and stuff it with the rice mixture. I was able to generously fill both halves of my delicata squash.

Place the stuffed delicata squash back in the over (or air fryer) for approximately 10 minutes at 400 degrees or until the top looks crisped and browned. Enjoy!

Use code HANNAHOCTOBER for a discount when you order from miracle noodle 🙂

***

Have you tried Shishito peppers? Do you stay on top of the foodie trends?

Vegan Sprout Pad Thai

Since moving to California, I’ve seen different varieties of veggies available. We definitely had bean sprouts available in the South, but they are in every grocery store here–which means I was inspired to use them! The key to bean sprouts (in my opinion) is to lightly cook them so they retain their crunchy texture. I came up with this dish one evening when I didn’t want to use the oven and heat up my apartment.

Ingredients:

1 bag Miracle Noodles

1.5 cups bean sprouts

1.5 cups chopped broccoli

3 tbsp Better Body Foods PB Fit (can sub with 1 tbsp peanut butter)

3 tbsp liquid aminos

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Directions:

1) Prepare @miraclenoodles according to directions on bag.

2) Combine broccoli and bean sprouts in a large bowl.

3) Top bean sprouts and broccoli with hot @miraclenoodles.

4) In a separate bowl, combine PB fit, liquid aminos, garlic, and ginger.

5) Pour mixture evenly over Noodle/veggie mix and toss well.

6) Enjoy hot or cold! I enjoyed mine by wrapping the mixture in sesame seed soy wrappers.

Use code HANNAHAUGUST for a discount when you order from Miracle Noodle.

***

What’s your favorite no-oven recipe?

Some Bay Area Eats (Part 1)

I moved to the Bay Area about a month ago and time has absolutely flown by! It’s been a hectic, fun experience and I’ve had the chance to try out quite a few different restaurants! I’ve found a few gems, and a few I wouldn’t recommend…

1. I’ll start with the not so good. While this isn’t a picture of the actual food, the food from The Third Eye Restaurant and Bar was not photogenic OR tasty. I think my sister enjoyed her Momo, but the other dishes, including tandoori chicken and an eggplant dish, were awful. We were surprised because the restaurant had fairly good reviews.

2. Maverick Jack’s caught my eye immediately; the building is right on the train tracks, has yellow trim, and looks like an old train station (which it is!). Luckily the food lived up to the cute look. The menu includes an assortment of interesting drinks and milkshakes–the strawberry lemonade was delicious and was made with plenty of freshly mashed strawberries. I ordered the southwestern salad, shown below, but everything was delicious.

3. We arrived in San Francisco with about 20 minutes to eat before our play started so this pick was based mostly on convenience, but it was delicious! After Osha was tasty and quick. I enjoyed my sweet and sour mushroom soup and we split fresh, tasty spring rolls.

4. I went out to eat with my cousins and they picked a great place in Burlingame–Steelhead Brewing Company. I am obsessed with jicama so I had to go with the southwestern salad, and it was a good choice! So fresh and so much food. Also, if you’re a fan of shoe string French fries–this is the place for you!

6. This Greek place Souvla was AMAZING. My friend and I spent like an hour deciding where to eat, and this meal made every minute worth it. I ordered the warm roasted chicken salad with fennel and she got the lamb gyro. Check out those pickled veggies!

Expect more good eats to come!

Southwestern Superfood Tuna Burgers

I’m just starting my first full time job so it’s time for full on adulting. I’ve always been a fan of meal prep to decrease stress during a busy week so I’ve been trying to come up with new, budget friendly lunch ideas. Our office goes out to eat together once I week, so I definitely want to keep it thrifty when I pack.

Protein is usually the most expensive ingredient for a meal so I usually keep it to tuna, eggs, and plant based options. Tuna by itself is not the most appealing so I decided to try an experiment: flavor packed tuna burgers! I can see endless options, but this flavor combo has been my favorite so far.

Ingredients:
-1 can tuna
-1/2 scoop Designer Protein green superfoods (Use code HANNAH20 for a discount!)
-1 tsp paprika
-1 tsp cumin
-2 tbsp egg whites

1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until thoroughly mixed.
2. Heat a non-stick or well greased griddle to 400.
3. Divide tuna mixture into two patties on the heated griddle.
4. Let sizzle for 2-3 minutes.

5. Carefully flip burgers over with a large spatula and let sizzle for 1-2 minutes.
6. Remove burgers from griddle.
7. Enjoy on top of a salad or on a bun!

***
What flavor combinations would you try?

Spaghetti Squash Casserole (GF)

I love coming up with new recipe ideas and I’ve recently been on a Greek yogurt kick. I had a spaghetti squash on hand and opted to make a casserole dish. The Greek yogurt added the perfect creamy, rich texture while keeping it healthy and full of protein! My dad was a huge fan too (he really loved the addition of bacon). 

Ingredients:
2 tbsp egg whites
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 small spaghetti squash
1 tsp minced garlic 
1/4c Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp bacon bits
1 bag Morningstar farms meat substitute 

1) Cook spaghetti squash in microwave; simply microwave at medium power for 4-7 minutes depending on size. I cooked our small one pound squash for about 4 minutes. 

2) Mix together Greek yogurt, egg whites, 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese, minced garlic, and bacon bits until well combined.

3) Sautée Morningstar farms crumbles according to directions on the bag until thoroughly cooked.


4) Cut open the spaghetti squash and scoop out the inside of the squash and shred well with a fork until no big chunks of squash remain.

5) In a large bowl, combine the cooked spaghetti squash and Greek yogurt mixture. After thoroughly mixed, add in the crumbles.


6) Pour the whole mixture into a greased large casserole dish. 


7) Bake for 30-45 minutes at 325. 


Enjoy! This freezes very well so feel free to make a big batch and then freeze one meal portions for lunches or extra busy nights. 


                               ***
Have you ever used greek yogurt in a casserole?